Clash of the Titans at Cannes – Vanity Fair
It’s Wednesday in New York, and my breakfast consists of granola I made from scratch. It’s not bad, in my humble opinion, but I imagine it’s nothing compared to a fresh pain au chocolat enjoyed by the French Riviera.
Yohana Desta here today as Rebecca Keegan is off covering the Cannes Film Festival, hopefully enjoying all the delicious French carbs that the movie stars are too scared to touch. Today we’ve got some Cannes film recommendations, Daniel Radcliffe’s comedy takeover, and Arrested Development reboot news. Allons-y!
VF.com’s Rebecca Keegan e-mails:
I’m sipping an Orangina on the “Terrasse des Journalistes” atop the Cannes Film Festival Palais after an especially rollicking press conference, where jury president Pedro Almodóvar and Cannes newcomer Will Smith took opposing sides in the festival’s roiling Netflix controversy. “I personally don’t perceive the Palme d’Or [should be] given to a film that is then not seen on the big screen,” Almodóvar told the room full of press, a comment which seemed to suggest the two Netflix films in competition this year, Noah Baumbach’s The Meyerowitz Stories and Bong Joon-ho’s Okja, have no shot at winning because they don’t yet have a French theatrical release planned. Smith, who has the big-budget film Bright due soon from Netflix, then spoke up for the streaming giant, citing his kids’ viewing habits. “Netflix has been nothing but an absolute benefit. [My kids] watch films they otherwise wouldn’t have seen. It has broadened my children’s global cinematic comprehension.” Here’s my dispatch from the press conference.
VF.com’s film critic Richard Lawson is with Rebecca at Cannes this year, hopefully also indulging in an Orangina and a fine French petit déjeuner. One thing he’ll definitely be indulging in is a bevy of new films. He’s penned a list of the 15 films everyone will be talking about. Netflix’s buzzy Okja, directed by Bong Joon-ho and starring Tilda Swinton, makes the cut, as does Wonderstruck, Todd Haynes’s follow-up to last year’s quietly stunning Carol. Wonderstruck is a “diptych about two kids living in different generations connected by a common quest.” Or something like that. The plot’s still a little mysterious. A couple others on Richard’s list that I’m personally excited for are Lynne Ramsay’s You Were Never Really Here starring Joaquin Phoenix, and The Florida Project, Sean Baker’s next feature after 2015’s excellent Tangerine.
DANIEL RADCLIFFE, COMEDY CHAMELEON
There is nothing I love more than reminding people how funny Daniel Radcliffe was on Extras, so 1) Please go watch his performance as a raunchy version of himself in the 2006 series if you haven’t already; 2) Get ready to see a lot more of the actor’s comedic side. On Wednesday, TBS announced that Radcliffe will star alongside Owen Wilson in a new comedy anthology series titled Miracle Workers. Saturday Night Live figurehead Lorne Michaels will executive produce the series, which will launch in 2018. Miracle Workers is a workplace comedy set in heaven, starring Radcliffe as an angelic pencil-pusher named Craig who has to take care of business when God (Wilson) decides to kick back and ignore his holy duties.
ALWAYS LEAVE A NOTE
VF.com’s Joanna Robinson e-mails:
When Arrested Development’s coolly received fourth season debuted on Netflix after a seven-year absence, there were plenty of TV fans who wondered if that would be it. In fact, should that be it? The reboot largely didn’t work and much of the magic of Mitch Hurwitz’s critically beloved comedy seemed gone. But timing is everything, and as Netflix announced Wednesday that it is officially bringing back the entire cast for a fifth season, there’s actually some real hope that we can make Arrested Development great again.
The first three seasons of the story of the obscenely rich and recently disgraced Bluth family first found life from 2003-2006 in the heyday of the second Bush administration. In its later seasons, the show found fertile ground in mocking high-profile Bush scandals—chiefly those involving former vice president Dick Cheney and his dealings in the Middle East. But when the show returned in 2013, America was firmly in the non-controversial embrace of the Obama administration and the satire of the rich and clueless floundered. Like S.N.L., Arrested Development works best in opposition to the establishment.
NO LAUGHING MATTER
VF.com’s Hillary Busis e-mails:
Though the late-night wars aren’t nearly as nasty as they used to be, there’s been one undeniable casualty as most of the industry has pivoted toward endless Trump-bashing: Jimmy Fallon, whose goofy spirit and genial games haven’t been resonating the way they used to. Eight months after earning ire by mussing then-candidate Trump’s hair, Fallon has finally addressed the controversy he stirred up: “I didn’t do it to humanize him,” Fallon told Dave Itzkoff of The New York Times. “I almost did it to minimize him.” Still, the host acknowledged, his critics “have a right to be mad,” adding, “If I let anyone down, it hurt my feelings that they didn’t like it. I got it.” At least Fallon can take solace in knowing that he still has plenty of famous friends on his side: “I don’t think the blame lies with The Tonight Show,” Tina Fey, his old Saturday Night Live pal, told the Times. “The blame lies with the hateful rhetoric of the candidate.”
YOU MAY WANT TO WATCH THIS MOVIE
In March, The New York Times published a startlingly beautiful and heartbreaking essay in its Modern Love column, titled “You May Want to Marry My Husband.” The essay was penned by the late author Amy Krouse Rosenthal, who was diagnosed with terminal ovarian cancer and wanted to write a sort of dating profile for her husband, Jason Brian Rosenthal. The piece, which also functioned as a love letter to the pair’s 26-year relationship, quickly went viral. Now, it’s being turned into a movie. Borys Kit of The Hollywood Reporter writes that Universal has picked up the rights to the story, as well as Rosenthal’s two memoirs, Textbook and Encyclopedia of an Ordinary Life.
That’s it for today! Send your granola recipes and general tips to email@example.com. Follow me on Twitter @yohanadesta.